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How Long Does Bankruptcy Stay on Your Record

A common concern for people considering bankruptcy is how long it will stay on their record. The answer depends in part on the type of bankruptcy a person files.

If you file Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the fact that you filed bankruptcy will likely remain on your credit report for ten years. If you file for Chapter 13, your bankruptcy will probably stay on your credit report for seven to ten years.

You can learn more about life after bankruptcy by contacting a local bankruptcy lawyer today. To arrange a free consultation with an attorney in your area, simply fill out the quick case review form below:

Where Does Bankruptcy Stay on Your Record

Those who are curious about how long bankruptcy stays on their records may also be wondering which types of documents record proof of their bankruptcy.

Evidence that a person has filed bankruptcy typically appears in:

  • Federal court records. Technically, proof of a person's bankruptcy appears on the federal bankruptcy court's records forever, which are accessible to the public. However, the typical task of many federal court records is to gather dust on long-forgotten shelves.
  • Credit reports. This is the key concern for most filers. Bankruptcy remains on a person's credit report for up to ten years, but this does not necessarily kill a person's ability to pursue new loans. Improving your credit score after bankruptcy is an important step to reducing the credit impact of bankruptcy.

In addition to these two main forms of bankruptcy records, public figures and celebrities may see news of their bankruptcies in newspapers, as anyone can request this information from bankruptcy courts.

However, people who are not famous usually do not need to fear paparazzi pouring through their financial records. Thus, most filers will likely not see their bankruptcy publicized.

Bankruptcy's Impact on Your Credit Record

The length of bankruptcy's imprint on your credit report depends in part on the type of bankruptcy you file:

  • Chapter 7. Typically, proof that a person has filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy remains on his or her credit report for ten years.
  • Chapter 13. Proof of Chapter 13 bankruptcy cases, which help filers reorganize their debts into new payment plans, usually remains on a credit report for seven to ten years from the time of filing.

The negative impact of bankruptcy, however, does not typically last as long, since the fresh start that bankruptcy provides allows a person to shed the burden of debt and begin building a healthy financial picture.

While bankruptcy may linger on a person's credit score, the debt-reducing effects of bankruptcy may take effect immediately.

As a result, many filers may find that seeking debt relief today is worth the appearance of a bankruptcy on their credit report.

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